Day 423: Three Days to Go.

It is a funny thing about marathon training. Before the race you don’t actually do much running. I’m sure some people do, but Claire and I are doing a low-impact type of marathon training that includes a generous tapering period. I am thankful, since my legs were hurting like a b@#$% for the past few weeks, but it does feel strange to only run a few times each week for rather short distances. Psychologically, it’s surprisingly difficult to feel pumped up for the race this weekend. At first, I was just relieved to be done running for over four hours every Sunday, and I took the tapering a bit too seriously and kinda maybe stopped running altogether. But then I got back to it, and now it feels weird to have not run for a few weeks and to be expected to just run the farthest I ever have this Saturday. Especially because three miles is back to feeling loooonnnnggggg…..

It’s good for the body, this tapering, but it’s kind of hard for the mind.

But then I don’t know why I’m surprised. Kenya has introduced me to all kinds of funny mind games. Like how typing up a list of the people who will be cheering at the marathon will potentially lead to fewer questions than a handwritten missive, or how a list of Monsters on our door that includes nearly every primary student at Tumaini can help them all feel more comfortable around us. When we go to market, haggling over the extra seven shillings makes me feel much less animosity towards my mangoes and the person who sold them, as I magically feel that I have somehow not been ripped off, when actually I just gained ten cents from someone who needs it much more than I do.

Ah mind games, most silly, some not. Today we lost one. Unbeknownst to us, we were involved in a face off over a bus. The bus we had reserved to take all the marathoners to the marathon this Friday got suddenly cancelled because someone more important needed it. Manager was Mad. Claire was Livid. I was Asleep because this emergency came knocking on our door at about 8 AM, and there was no coffee in sight. As always seems to happen around here, and even more so than normal this week, all my plans for the day were gone within minutes of waking up because I had to head to a faraway town on a crowded matatu with Manager to renegotiate with another school.

But this mind game, like so many, did end up just making us feel better in the end. We saved money on the second bus, we got a big enough one to take our supporting cheer-ers, I got to see a lovely new part of Kenya (Karatina…v. beautiful. Lots of tea.)

Hopefully the mind game of tapering, so painful right now, will also end up just making me feel better in the end. I’ll report back if I survive the marathon.

1 comment:

Candice said...

Hey L&C,

I've been reading your blog on and off over the past year (has it really been that long!!!) as I've lived in Colombia, lived in South Africa (that's a long story) and now - back home - while at work.

I'm so proud of what you are both doing - I'm sure there are many days when you wake up and think - hell, how did this happen, how did we get here? But I'm learning that life is funny like that.

Anyway, I just wanted to wish you the best of adventures for this weekend (becauze in Afrika, itz alwayz an ADventure!)and to take a moment to look around and note what you have achieved - to see the light you have brought to so many. (including me who is sitting in an office).

"Remember it is good to have an end to a journey towards, but it's the journey that matters in the end"

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